5 Ways to Boost Your Mood This Semester

A new year means new trends, new friends, and a fresh start for most people. But let’s not kid ourselves, by October you can find students weeping over a burrito bowl wearing the same sweatshirt they’ve worn for the last two days and a to-do list that’s a mile long. Trying to keep up with academic, financial, and social responsibilities can leave us feeling overwhelmed and undervalued. Over the years, I’ve established some go-to tactics to shake off the stress.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

1—Sweat It Out!

We just established that you have a million things to do, so how will you have time to hit the gym? Relax. Going for a slow jog around the block, doing some yoga on your porch, or even going on a bike ride with a friend will release endorphins to boost your mood.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

2—Treat Yo’ Self

Tom Haverford had it right. Don’t be so hard on yourself! Once a week, take the time to do something just for yourself. It could be ordering in your favorite takeout, making yourself an utterly enchanting bubble bath, or buying the pair of cute booties you’ve been eyeballing since July. Even taking just a little time to focus on something other than your projects will make you feel much better.

3—Say Goodnight.

Getting enough sleep during the school year is a challenge all on its own. But going to bed at a reasonable hour is a major key. Have you ever had a day filled with brain farts where you could never focus on a task or struggle finding the right words when you’re having conversations? Just like your MacBook when you have 1,987 tabs open, your brain gets overworked. And when it does, you’re more irritable, less focused, and in turn more stressed. Have some warm tea, listen to your favorite John Mayer song, and hit the lights.

PHOTO: Anna Coke

4—Reprioritize and Organize.

I used to hate that my mother made me organize my room and my schedule religiously, but because of that I did well in school and was able to tackle a heavy schedule. Taking the time to organize your private space really does wonders for your stress. An open, easy-to-navigate environment (with maybe a nice candle or two) is proven to boost your mood. Figure out what tasks are most important and what things you can wait to accomplish so you can allocate your time more wisely.

PHOTO: Emily Truong

5—Tune it out.

Music is such a great way to lighten the mood and boost productivity. Spotify has loads of great playlists perfect for any occasion. I could listen to John Legend and no matter how moody I am, I’ll feel a million times better. Build a playlist for your study sessions or even just to listen to around campus. Listen to new artists and don’t be afraid to experience new genres.

What are your favorite mood-boosting tips? Share with us in the comments below or on social media by tagging @CFashionista.

ALL IN THE DETAILS: Silver Linings

Mondays are the worst. There’s nothing more disheartening that having a joyous weekend filled with typical college shenanigans be abruptly ended by the electronic alarm on your iPhone at 8 a.m. on a Monday. Someone once told me the best day of the week to dress up is Monday because no one puts any effort into their appearance and you’ll come off looking like royalty. Or just really obnoxious. I told them they clearly haven’t entered The Fashion School at Kent State University where we Fashionistas are Jedis at achieving the “I just rolled out of bed but I still look better than you” look.

This Fashionista achieved this look effortlessly, of course. The key to being comfy chic is to pair cozy neutrals with a statement shoe. This Fashionista dons a snug cardigan and pairs it with a black-on-black combination of a T-shirt and leggings. She wraps herself in a black blanket scarf and accessorizes the ensemble with a brown checkered tote. The pinnacle of this look are her silver oxfords. Metallic shoes are a key trend this autumn and are the perfect touch to any lazy day outfit. Don’t forget to pop into Starbucks to caffeinate before a day of exams and lectures. A Frappucino a day keeps the failure away. 

Dreary Mondays might be filled with crushing responsibility and hazy memories of the weekend, but a simple shiny shoe can brighten up your day. Add some bold lipstick and a top knot to make your ensemble all the more chic.


Wow. Shocker. Surprise. I’m wearing black. Those who know me know that finding me wearing black is like finding LeBron James playing basketball. It’s a pretty common occurrence. I get asked why I never try something new, and the answer is, I do. I try new textures and silhouettes all the time. My wardrobe does in fact feature other colors than black. I mean nothing bright or sparkly—when pigs fly is when you’ll catch me wearing wearing anything bright green or purple—but the color black remains the foundation of my wardrobe.

For this outfit I paired a lattice cut top with a leather skirt. I love the contrast in textures. I added one of this fall’s key trends, a bomber jacket, to keep me warm and smiling despite my slow realization that summer is in fact over. I accessorized the look with some classic white Nikes, a leather bag and my go-to mirrored sunnies. This look is my signature: edgy, chic and simple.

Why is the color black the core of the modern wardrobe? The color black, to me, symbolizes strength, ambition and power. Dressing head-to-toe in black is a statement. I want people to take me seriously. It’s not that not wearing black makes you a goofball. In fact, I really admire people who can mix prints and embody their bold personality through an even bolder wardrobe, and wearing all-black all the time doesn’t mean you can’t have fun. I’m actually pretty sure I’m the most active between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m., but no matter the personality you can’t deny importance of donning black.


Most of you probably aren’t familiar with John Wayne, and that’s okay because most of you aren’t 50-year-old men with a taste for cigars and whiskey. To enlighten you, John Wayne was an American movie star of the 1940s and 1950s most known for his many roles set in the wild, Wild West. Westerns popularized cowboy culture and Americana in society throughout much of the 1950s. Little boys and girls loved to dress up as cowboys/cowgirls and go galloping around on their stick horses through their backyards. I had a stick horse, his name was Hugo. Well, last spring’s runways have gave birth to the urban cowgirl. The trend is catching on. Check out these rad boots. I reckon you’ll love this jacket.

This Fashionista totally modified the western trend and nailed it. Her ensemble is all black and bad-to-the-bone. The key piece of this outfit is a silky, button-down blouse adorned with two bull skulls. It’s unique and definitely makes a statement. She pairs the blouse with black cigarette trousers. She tops off the look with another key trend, all-white adidas sneakers. The look is simple but original. She proves you don’t have to go galloping off into the sunset in the deserts of Nevada to be a cool cowgirl.

So kick up your spurs and test out this trend. Pair a maxi dress with some studded boots or add a suede skirt to a peasant blouse. Dress like the West.

STYLE GURU BIO: Allyson Kramer

Hello again! I’m back and I’m better. I mean, not really. I got some highlights and started running more, so maybe a little better. This is my fourth semester writing for CollegeFashionista and dude, I’m stunned. CollegeFashionista grew immensely since I started writing my freshman year. Since joining two years ago, this internship gave me incredible opportunities, including a feature in Seventeen Magazine and on MTV Style and SELF Magazine’s websites. Every year I’m more and more excited to see the number of students joining CollegeFashionista grow. I think we’re up to about 1,800 writers now. Who would’ve thought picking up a camera and snapping a couple trendy kids at your school could be so life changing?

Anyway, before I start a nostalgic ramble about the evolution of my style through college, I should probably introduce myself for you newbies. I’m Allyson, a junior fashion merchandising major at Kent State University in Ohio. I know what you’re thinking. Studying fashion in Ohio is probably a lot like studying marine biology in Nevada. But surprisingly Kent State University remains one of the top ranked fashion schools in the United States year after year. If you really want to understand me you should know I love three things: late night pizza, naps on the beach, and hedgehogs named Winston.

My style, though dynamic through the years, has really been founded on the color black. Like the color of my soul. I’m totally kidding. If you know me, you know I never shut up. I’ll usually buy anything if it’s black and lacy. So of course this look features just that. I paired a lacy bralette with a layered lace top from Free People. To make the outfit more casual, I added a pair of jeans which I cut the hems off of because I drew the short straw in terms of genetics. You feel me? I accessorized the look with a pair of patent black stilletos and a clutch from BCBG. This outfit is really great for a date night (but what are boys) or can be dressed down by substituting the heels for a pair of Birkenstocks.

I’m incredibly stoked (a word I use a lot) to be moving to New York in January to begin a semester of self exploration and achievement in the fashion industry. But until then, I’ll stick to the streets of Kent, Ohio for all my fashion inspiration. Hopefully I keep you guys entertained all semester!

BEAUTY BAR: Like Kylie

If you say you’ve never imagined even once what it’d be like to be Kylie Jenner, you’re lying. Kylie Jenner’s life is so glamorous that she owns a fleet of cars worth probably close to a million dollars. Mike Tyson might have a pet tiger, but Kylie has a pet Tyga. Without a doubt she went from a shadow in her sisters’ spotlights to a global phenomenon. In recent months, Jenner struck the cosmetic jackpot when she released a line of liquid matte liquids inspired by her surgically enhanced famous lips. Kylie Lip Kits are so popular that they create an almost Hunger Games-esque frenzy as customers all over the world clamor to purchase shades of the liquid lipsticks before they sell out in a matter of minutes.

This Fashionista and cosmetic connoisseur was lucky enough to snag a Kylie Lip Kit in the shade “Koko K.” With the addition of a bold brow and a shimmering highlighter, the look is subtly glamorous. Her outfit consists of some denim on denim action, a favorite trend of mine, and a bold sienna toned clutch. This Fashionista’s look goes to show that you don’t have to surgically enhance your lips (or any part of your body) to express your beauty.

What’s on the BEAUTY BAR: To get this look start with a classic bold brow. Contour using a powder palette and a highlighter for a fresh dewy effect. Add some eyeshadow in soft rosy hues and tightline your eyes to create volume at the lash line. Lastly finish the look with a nude liquid matte lipstick. While Kylie Lip Kits are a phenomenal product, Colour Pop and Anastasia Beverly Hills offer great lipsticks as well.

ALL IN THE DETAILS: Dipped in Denim

Somewhere deep in the archives of my family photos there are pictures of my mother drenched in denim. This photos were primarily taken circa 1994 or 1995. My lovely mother rocked a denim jacket and usually a nice, conservative pair of mom jeans. She was probably too busy taking care of my two ornery older sisters (I came into play in 1996, and am the reigning favorite) to realize that she was fashion-forward. Over 20 years later, my mother’s denim aesthetic is becoming a trend in stores and on the runway. Denim tops, jackets and mini skirts are, as they say, all the rage. Even more enthralling is that embroidered denim jackets are also becoming a fad again. That’s pretty rad. Shoutout to my mother for having the ability to not only raise three daughters but to also be quite the trendsetter. I really do get it from my momma.

This Fashionista too is a trendsetter. Her ensemble is coolly casual and relaxed. The base of her outfit is a double down of denim. She pairs a chambray with destroyed boyfriend jeans. Though the hues of blue are different, the trend is still evident and well executed. She layers the look with both a black bomber and a tan longline coat to add dimension. Lastly this Fashionista finishes off the outfit cream scarf for texture and bright red booties for flare. This ensemble is perfect for a brisk spring day when meandering around campus.

How To: Denim is the foundation of the commercial fashion industry. Find any old pair of jeans and throw on a chambray to mimic this Fashionista’s look. If you’re feeling extra trendy, trade the chambray for a destroyed denim jacket for added edge.


Out of the 12 months of the year, February is perhaps my least favorite. Lurking in the middle of winter, February is filled with ice, snow and the harrowing whimpers of the millions of singles as Valentine’s day quickly approaches. I’m not going to lie, usually my February is filled with ice cold cynicism as I walk from class to class with an attitude, dark lipstick and dark clothes listening to a lot of Lana Del Rey. As I walk, I notice firstly that the population of my campus must’ve shrunk immensely as it looks like a ghost town. And secondly, I notice that the poor souls who’ve braved the cold to go class look less like students, and more like penguins wrapped in a mix of either Patagonia or The North Face. I understand that frostbite is not trendy. I admit that as I live in an area where 50 degrees is considered “shorts weather,” when cold weather strikes I must choose function over fashion. But I’m a strong believer in having both.

Take notes from this Kent State Fashionista. She dons a cozy ensemble consisting of several neutral layers and a Starbucks latte. Her base is a simple pairing of a black and white sweater and black jeans. She throws on a tan scarf for a little embellishment, and adds a dark green overcoat for a little contrast. Finally she accessorizes the look with a simplistic black bag and black booties. The look is sweetly snug and innocent. This Fashionista proves that just because the temperatures drop doesn’t mean you have to drop your style.

One Simple Change: Swap the booties for a fresh pair of white sneakers for a casual weekend look.


As the nauseatingly cliche saying goes, “Women who wear black tend to lead very colorful lives.” I wear a lot of black, and I’d like to think that for a 19-year-old living in northeast Ohio my life is fairly colorful. It’s ironic that black was originally worn to characterize death but now we Fashionistas wear it when we feel most alive. It’s almost a crime not to have an LBD in your closet for whatever nightlife happens to appear on your social calendar. Instead of being a color used to embody intense somber emotions (unless you’re 12 and wear a lot of black), the color now depicts luxury as tastemakers such as Kanye West and Gigi Hadid can frequently be seen stepping out of black Mercedes Benzes and Audis with ensembles to match.

This Fashionista stepped out of The Fashion School at Kent State drenched in black. She dons a pair of leather leggings, one of the season’s top trends. She pairs them with a black sweater and black overcoat for a sleek and sophisticated look. She accessorizes the outfit with a black tote and black sunglasses to add to the aesthetic. The finishing touch is a pair of taupe suede booties lined with fringe to add a tiny bit of flair to the ensemble. The outfit is crisp and casually decadent.

Whether it’s a tiny bodycon dress hanging on the racks at Charlotte Russe or a gorgeous Valentino gown making its way down a Parisian runway, the color black can be found in all nooks and crannies of the fashion industry. For some, the color represents emotion and tenacity. For others it represents luxury and affluence. Navy is not the new black. Burgundy is not the new black. And as much as I love a good tussle in a women’s correctional facility, orange is certainly not the new black. Black is the new black.

What is your STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK? “You don’t have to be going to a funeral to be dipped head to toe in black. Add more black pieces to your wardrobe and create a collection of chic and sophisticated go-tos.”

STYLE GURU BIO: Allyson Kramer

I went to a high school that was located across from a corn field. A lot of the students wore camouflage, so I pretended that I couldn’t see them (I kid, I kid). In all honesty, I appreciate the small town I was raised in. However, in my teenage angst I found it imperative to my existence that I escape my tiny, perpetual town and drive a half hour south to Columbus and explore a more dynamic and inspiring environment. I remember I used to look up the summaries of movies playing to tell my parents when they asked me where I was and what I was doing. I never actually saw World War Z. I heard it was good. Instead I was off precociously making my way through crowds at local music bars trying to hide the X’s on my hands. I found myself more comfortable in an environment where I could dress head-to-toe in all-black and nobody would ask me, “What’s wrong?”

Though I’m afraid to say my days of teenage angst are passed me, I learned a few valuable lessons while milling about the city at all hours of the night. Number one, pizza after one a.m. is always a good idea. And number two, there is a key difference between being fashionable and having style. Being fashionable means having a Michael Kors bag, a Michael Kors watch and tall patent rain boots with a gold “MK” at the top of either boot for all to see. There’s nothing wrong with Michael Kors. He is an extremely talented designer. However, what you wear should not be dictated by what everyone else is wearing. Having style means truly expressing yourself through fashion regardless of what anyone else is wearing.

Today my style greatly differs from the cardigans and combat boots I used to wear walking down the hallways of my high school to blend in with the sea of camouflage sweatshirts and UGG boots. I find myself more obsessed with how and where clothes were made rather than who they were made by. I scroll through the websites of stores like Reformation and Madewell tirelessly with a head full of a lot of wardrobe inspiration and a bank account full of a lot of nothing. While my style has changed immensely, my intense desire to explore and innovate never will.